MM:NT Berlin Lab: A Beta Hotel Within Itself Testing Self-Service Stays

05.30.24 | By
MM:NT Berlin Lab: A Beta Hotel Within Itself Testing Self-Service Stays

In the simplest of terms, the MM:NT Berlin Lab is a temporary mini-hotel within a hotel – the first of its kind. Each of the Lab’s six guest rooms are being used by operator Adina Hotels to beta test new ideas in hope of determining exactly what Gen Z and Millennial travelers prefer during a stay. The emphasis is on observing whether that group of travelers might be willing to give up some traditional amenities or conveniences for a more leisurely, self-service model that borrows from the digital interactions, which made Airbnb a popular alternative to traditional practices.

A wall-mounted sign on a building exterior reads "MM:NT" with a black and white color scheme, giving the appearance of a chic hotel entrance.

Photo: Lars Brønseth

Developed by Experience Design Strategist Philippa Wagner in partnership with architecture firms ACME and BWM, booking one of MM:NT Berlin Lab’s six rooms took on the feeling of securing concert tickets. Only accessible through a sign-up broadcast via social media in January, potential guests vied for a one-, two-, or three-night stay in the rooms – for free – across testing dates spanning from March to May 2024. Unsurprisingly, every room and reservation date sold out in just two hours.

A person in a blue sleeve holds a smartphone near a door with an electronic lock, displaying a digital key or access screen at the beta testing MM:NT Berlin Lab hotel.

Photo: Lars Brønseth

“Our theory is there’s a cohort of Gen Z and Millennial travelers in particular that are open to new ways of interacting with hotel services,” says Asli Kutlucan, Chief Executive Officer at Adina Europe. “We’re therefore using the lab to explore various hotel interfaces to see how we can adapt to changing behaviors and demands. Berlin is the ideal location for our beta hotel as it attracts the culturally curious and is a mecca for change-makers and creative minds.”

A minimalist bedroom in the MM:NT Berlin Lab hotel features a double bed on a wooden platform, two wall-mounted reading lights, a small round table with a textured stool, and green upholstered seating by the side.

Photo: Silke Briel

The MM:NT Berlin Lab rooms are offered in three layouts:
LittleSmall and perfectly formed with a double bed, shower room, and clever modular storage that makes the most of the compact space.
MiddleComes with the addition of a compact kitchenette – everything that you need and nothing that you don’t.
BigFeels like a super-stylish mini apartment, with a compact kitchen and open-plan living and dining area. There’s even an extra fold-out wall bed in a clever, no-fuss room design to maximize space and minimize clutter.

A modern hotel room features a wooden interior, a bed with white linens, a spherical pendant light, and minimalist furniture including a small desk with stools and a sliding door—all reflecting the innovative touch of MM:NT Berlin Lab.

ROOM 00:05 – Little Bedroom, designed by ACME \\\ Photo: Silke Briel

At just 14 square meters, the “Little” ROOM 00:05 takes on a cozy but contemporary approach to maximize its compact space. Terracotta recycled glass tiles made by Eco Friendly Tiles cover the entire room, including a bathroom outfitted with a rainfall shower and recycled post-industrial plastic sink.

A modern hotel room featuring a bed, desk with two chairs and lamps, a small kitchen, and a bathroom area. Walls are covered in light wood paneling with soft lighting, offering the perfect retreat after exploring the city or attending events at MM:NT Berlin Lab.

ROOM 00:01 – Middle Bedroom, designed by ACME \\\ Photo: Silke Briel

A “Middle” size accommodation, ROOM 00:01 expands the layout and features with a bamboo and sage green palette, multi-functional furniture, such as a headboard that doubles up as a desk, and a small kitchen. The room is also the literal test bed for two different sustainable mattress companies, allowing the hotel to do a bit of A/B testing.

A split image showcasing a cozy bedroom with a bed, wooden walls, and a hanging lamp on the left; and on the right, a modern dining area with a table, chairs, and a bench reminiscent of the sophisticated design found in MM:NT Berlin Lab hotel's contemporary spaces.

ROOM 00:06 – Big Bedroom, designed by ACME

Measuring a “Big” 28 square meters, ROOM 00:06 gives guests the opportunity – and space – to spread out across an open-plan living and dining area layout with furnishings, which include a birch veneer table and Snøhetta chairs made in collaboration with Nordic Comfort Products (NCP) using recycled fishing plastic. The treatments give guests the feeling of staying in an apartment rather than at a hotel. A compact kitchenette designed by ACME features a Foresso worktop made using recycled wood chips and the room’s slightly secluded closet-bed draws inspiration from a traditional nineteenth century Dutch bed design.

A modern communal dining area at the MM:NT Berlin Lab's Counter features a large blue oval table with eight brown chairs. The space boasts green curtains, potted plants, and ample natural light through tall windows, creating a refreshing ambiance akin to a stylish hotel lounge.

Photo: Silke Briel

A modern room at the MM:NT Berlin Lab with green curtains, a matching green sofa, two chairs, plants, and a colorful rug on a wooden floor. A wooden door and cabinetry are in the background, creating an inviting hotel-like ambiance.

In the heart of MM:NT Berlin Lab is the Lounge, the public-facing ‘lobby’ which offers guests a space to unwind, relax and the chance to connect with others. \\\ Photo by Silke Briel

Modern cafe counter with tiled front and wooden bar stools; overhead sign reads "COUNTER." A coffee machine, hanging pots, and glasses are visible, with plants decorating the walls and ceiling. The ambiance feels like a stylish hotel lobby, reminiscent of the vibe at MM:NT Berlin Lab.

The Counter serves as a multipurpose and self-serve bar, offering guests coffees and sandwiches during the day, and locally sourced wine and organic beer at night. \\\ Photo by Silke Briel

Communal locker units within the MM:NT Berlin Lab allowing guests for food delivery and other services. A large modern and colorful painting of floating nebulous shapes is wall mounted to the right of the locker shelving system.

The Hub is an open communal storage locker system, allowing guests to have groceries, laundry, and meals delivered into their own lockers via app. \\\ Photo: Silke Briel

In spite of the hype surrounding the free beta testing rooms, the MM:NT Berlin Lab is undoubtedly a serious effort in market research that will give Adina a wealth of knowledge about younger travelers. Adina Hotels’ development team is already looking across Europe for other locations to open new hotels using information gleaned from MM:NT Berlin Lab guests.

What: MM:NT Berlin Lab

Where: Adina Apartment Hotel Berlin Hackescher Markt; An d. Spandauer Brücke 11, 10178 Berlin, Germany
How much: MM:NT Berlin Lab team recently completed the process of conducting a two-month experiment where guests were invited to book a stay for free in exchange for providing real-time qualitative feedback of the hotel design, public spaces, and overall experience.
Highlights: The Lab offered guests a choice from six minimalist “Beta” room designs operated under a self-serve model by a concierge web-based mobile app. It allowed guests to check-in and check-out, open spaces, and access shared amenities including The Hub – a communal space at MM:NT Berlin Lab that allowed guests to have food, groceries, and laundry securely delivered.
Design draw: The MM:NT Berlin Lab was strategically located in the Mitte neighborhood, making it an ideal base for exploring the city’s rich cultural tapestry. The hotel’s proximity to iconic landmarks like the Brandenburg Gate, Museum Island, and the Berlin Wall Memorial offered guests a deep dive into the city’s historical and cultural heritage. Additionally, the surrounding neighborhood is dense with trendy boutiques, cafes, and nightlife.
Book it: Unfortunately, their two-month experiment recently ended, but you can sight up to be kept in the loop for when they open bookings back up here.

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Gregory Han is a Senior Editor at Design Milk. A Los Angeles native with a profound love and curiosity for design, hiking, tide pools, and road trips, a selection of his adventures and musings can be found at